Why Teen Drivers Cause Car Accidents

Parents hope to keep their teens safe. Sadly, car crashes are a leading cause of death for teens in the United States. The legal team at Malman Law knows that teen drivers have some of the most elevated accident ratings of any age group, and they can cause and suffer injuries.

Teenage Driver Behavior That Puts All Road Users in Danger

Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), on average, six teens die every day due to car crashes, whether driving or riding as passengers.

CDC research suggests primary reasons teenage motorists are more likely to be involved in car crashes:

  • Less experience: Teenage motorists have 3x the fatal crash risk of more experienced drivers because they do not have the mastery of recognizing and avoiding road hazards. Teenagers may spot dangerous conditions later than more adept drivers.  
  • Distractions: Motorists under 20 have the most elevated rates of distraction-related deaths in the U.S., mainly those who use cell phones and text while driving. The CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) discovered that 42% of high school students admitted to sending a text or email while driving in the last 30 days.
  • Driving with companions: Researchers have found a connection between the number of teenage passengers and inflated crash risk when an unsupervised teen drives.  
  • Speeding: Teenagers are more likely to speed and follow too closely behind another car, making it harder to avoid accidents. Risk-taking demeanor increases with male teenage drivers, especially if there are other male passengers.
  • Weekend and night driving: Teens whose licenses no longer have night-driving conditions are at substantial risk of suffering deadly crashes. Half of all teenage deaths from auto collisions occur between 3 p.m. and midnight. Weekends are also deadly, with 53% of deaths happening on Friday through Sunday.
  • Drinking and drug abuse: Over one million high school students drink and drive every year.  
  • Careless seat belt use: Teens have among the lowest seat belt use rates when compared to other ages. Only 61% of high school students always wear seat belts when driving with another individual. Teenage motorists with involved parents are twice as likely to wear seat belts.

How to Stay Safe on the Highways

Just because a teenager is involved in a collision doesn’t mean they are liable for it. Nevertheless, establishing their innocence can be challenging because they are statistically more likely to be at fault. Skilled car accident lawyers represent drivers injured by another’s negligence. They understand how much injuries to teenage motorists can impact their prospects in school and beyond. And as for deaths, they are tragic for everyone involved.

One thing parents can do today is talk to teenagers about safe driving. They can also lead by example, setting aside cell phones while driving the car or putting them in charge of inputting a destination into the GPS or navigation system. No parent wants to hear their kid has been severely hurt or has hurt someone else. Teaching a teen how to avoid accidents can help keep them safe.

A Chicago Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

Contact trusted personal injury lawyers if a teen was injured by someone else’s negligent or reckless driving, or someone suffered injuries due to a negligent teen driver. Malman Law will fight for rightful compensation for car accident victims. 

Author: Brandon Park